Alec Rossiter
Screenwriter






            CAPTAIN FREEDOM -- final script
 
            Short screenplay -- Comedy/drama


            
George gets a new employent opputunity. But can he impress?

               
Copyright -- Univertsity of Westminster.
 
 
 
               INT. LOFT - DAY

We hear the shipping forecast on the radio.

A British Airways Airfix model aeroplane flies over a
spinning globe. One of the wings falls off!

It is GEORGE, a man in his fifties, wearing a red arrows T
Shirt; he flies the plane with one hand and spins the
globe with the other.

He is sitting at a worktable cluttered with half made
aeroplane models, tiny pots of glue and paint.

The rest of the loft displays hundreds of perfectly
finished model planes. Beyond this are hundreds and
hundreds of untouched model boxes.

Leaning on the wall wee see a grubby old shop sign:

'HALLIBURTON's MODEL PARADISE
New & Used
Open 6 Days A Week'



EXT. TOWNCENTRE - DAY

Sky.

An aeroplane leaves a trail through the air - the vapour
forms into the title text: CAPTAIN FREEDOM.

GEORGE advances along the pavement he is wearing a Concorde
T-Shirt, a bum-bag and carries a plastic bag.

He walks into a grand looking building.



INT. OFFICE - DAY

An unhealthy women in her fifties, MRS BARTROP, is sitting
in front of unenthusiastic TRACEY. Tracey is glued to her
computer screen; we see her big permed hair from the back.

MRS. BARTROP
. . well I'm hoping the new pills
are going to help you see... the
shooting pains in my ankles are
already starting to go but these
varicose veins . .
(Rubbing her calves)
They still nuisance me something
wicked . .

TRACEY
Yes . . well thank you Mrs.
Bartrop.

MRS. BARTROP
Oh yes . . thank you.



INT. HALLWAY - DAY

GEORGE sits next to a closed doorway at the end of a line
of cheap plastic chairs.

TRACEY
(Distorted through PA)
Next please!

The door opens and MRS. BARTROP toddles out.

TRACEY (CONT'D)
Hope Not to see you next time
then.

MRS. BARTROP
Oh yes. Hope not . .

TRACEY
Next please!



INT. OFFICE - DAY

GEORGE walks in and expectantly seats himself placing his
plastic bag on the floor. TRACEY holds down a button on a
worn out speaker phone.

TRACEY
Pencil in Mrs. Bartrop for next
month would you Derek.

She goes back to staring at her computer screen; her
default position.

TRACEY (CONT'D)
Mr. . Halliburton.

GEORGE
(A little apprehensive)
Yes . . hello.

TRACEY
Now this is the . . second time
I've seen you Mr. Halliburton . .
you've been unemployed now for...
twelve weeks . .

GEORGE
Yes...

TRACEY
Ah good . . you've been applying
for plenty of positions . . it
says here you got an interview at
Jingo's.

GEORGE
Ah . . yes, they said my
experience wasn't quite in the
right field.

TRACEY
Well unfortunately it is some of
the most skilled people we have
through these doors that it is
hardest to find unemployment for
Mr. Halliburton. Now . . do you
have any new skills or experience
that I can put on your database?

Tracey finally turns to make eye contact with George. Her
face is rather orange from excessive use of tanning
products.

GEORGE
(Sits back)
Erm . .

TRACEY
Yes?

GEORGE
Well . . I've been so busy trying
to find work . . writing letters
. . you know . .

TRACEY
(Interrupting)
Okay . . I'm just going to search
our system for you Mr.
Halliburton.

GEORGE
Oh . . thank you.

Tracey clicks her mouse. George looks around the office, a
photo on the wall catches his eye; it is Tracey on holiday
with her friends holding cocktails, etc.

TRACEY
Mr. Halliburton

George's mind has drifted off.

TRACEY (CONT'D)
Mr. Halliburton

GEORGE
Oh . . oh yes . .

TRACEY
Your database tells us that you
have some experience in the field
of dramatics . .

GEORGE
(Apprehensive)
Well . . yes . . it was sort
of...

TRACEY
Oh good, this could be right up
your street.

GEORGE
It's not exactly . .

TRACEY
It's part of a new scheme. This
will enlighten you.

Tracey hands George a booklet.

TRACEY (CONT'D)
Now just fill this in and attach
your C.V. and I'm sure you'll get
an interview.

GEORGE
Erm . .

TRACEY
Next please.

GEORGE
So . .

TRACEY
Thank you Mr. Halliburton.

Tracey smiles for the first time; excessive use of
lipstick has crept onto her front teeth.

GEORGE
Yes . . thank you very much.

TRACEY
Next please!

He gets up, nearly forgetting his plastic bag he walks out.
Another person enters.



EXT. SUBURBAN STREET - DAY

Cars pass. A group of primary school children in uniform
crowd around a lollipop lady, ANGIE, in her fifties. A kid
swings around her lollipop stick, another tugs at her
sleeve.

She looks left and right, walks into the road, holds up her
lollipop, and signals the kids to cross. They march neatly
in line across the street.

She goes back to the roadside and cars continue their
journey. Angie waves at a clapped out old run-a-bout that
decelerates past her; it parks up just down the road and
GEORGE gets out.

GEORGE
Hello dear.

ANGIE
How was the meeting?

George pecks her on the cheek.

GEORGE
Well, yes it was okay . . you
know . . try their best don't
they. They gave me an
application.

ANGIE
Oh, that's good dear . .

GEORGE
Yeah . .

ANGIE
That's great isn't it . .

GEORGE
. . they want me use my drama
skills.

ANGIE
Your what?

GEORGE
You remember Ange? I did the
panto for the appeal, years back.

ANGIE
Yes . . but that was backstage
George!

GEORGE
Well you've got to put something
on those forms they give you.

ANGIE
Oh . . if you put your back out
again . .

GEORGE
Don't worry, I don't even know
the details yet . . how's your
day?

ANGIE
. . well it hasn't been great.
It's not good George.

GEORGE
What's not good?

ANGIE
(Losing brave face)
It's those damn traffic lights
they're planning . . they're
going up George . . look, look!

She gestures down the road where some workman have their
van parked up; they sit pouring hot beverages from a
flask.

ANGIE (CONT'D)
Those bloody things . . the kids
don't even bother using them. I
tell you . .

GEORGE
(Consoles Angie)
Oh love . . we'll manage. These
last few months we've been okay
haven't we?

ANGIE
(Resists George's
consolation)
. . the kids George . . the kids!
They'll have to employ someone to
peel them of the road!

GEORGE
Well I'm looking for work aren't
I! No . . no! Only teasing.

ANGIE
(Fights off a smile)
Oh . .

GEORGE
That's it Ange . . we'll be fine.

ANGIE
(Exclaims)
First your shop . . now this . .

GEORGE
Don't worry yourself, come on . .

George Takes Angie in his arms. We see the workmen larking
around down the road; a beat on George.



INT. LOUNGE - DAY

A modest size traditional front room. BANG . . RATTLE. We
hear an exterior door then GEORGE enters. He sits on his
armchair and puts down his plastic bag taking a moment to
gather his thoughts.

He takes the job leaflet out of the plastic bag and puts it
on the coffee table.

He takes out a wedge of holiday brochures from the bag:
'LANZAROTEE UNLIMITED' . . 'BUDGET BREAKS' . . 'CHEAP
FLIGHTS'

He takes the brochures to the corner of the room and adds
them to an existing pile. Stuck on the wall are postcards
from friends and relatives; next to the brochures is a
large glass bottle filled with loose change: notes are at
the bottom, gold and silver coins turn to bronze near the
top.

He takes some loose change out of his pocket and drops a
few coppers into the bottle. George leaves the room.



INT. HALLWAY - DAY

GEORGE deposits some silver into an electricity meter fixed
on the wall. CLINK . . CLONK.



INT. LOFT - DAY

GEORGE sits at his work desk putting the finishing touches
to a model.

The lollipop stands upside down in the background.

RING RING . . RING RING . . RING RING . .

ANGIE
George . . it's for you.

GEORGE
Pass it up dear.

George turns down the radio. We hear Angie climb a few
steps of a ladder and her head pops through the loft hatch.
She passes the phone to George.

GEORGE (CONT'D)
Thanks love.
(To phone)
Hello.

Yes.

Yes.

Oh, hello.
(Perks up)
Yes.

Oh really. Yes fabulous.

Oh, yes. I do.

In the post . . yes.

Next week, okay, then it's the
week after that. Fabulous.

Yes, thank you very much.

Yes. Thank you.

Thanks. Bye-bye now.

ANGIE
Who was that dear?

GEORGE
I got the job!

ANGIE
Oh George . . which one love?

GEORGE
You know . . the one where I have
to go to schools . . that new
government initiative.

ANGIE
Oh well done George. Well done,
see I told you!
I'll put the kettle on love.

Angie's head disappears. George looks very pleased with
himself and follows Angie.



INT. HALLWAY - DAY

GEORGE is siting in pyjamas at the bottom of the stairs
eating his breakfast cereal.

DING DONG. A POSTMAN is at the front door. George jumps
up and opens the door.

POSTMAN
Mr. Halliburton

GEORGE
Yes.

POSTMAN
Parcel.

GEORGE
Yes thanks. Great!
Good morning.

George takes his parcel and some other letters.



INT. LOUNGE - DAY

GEORGE sits down and sifts through the post, it is mostly
junk mail that he disposes in the waste paper basket. He
puts 'MODELS MART MONTHLY' on the coffee table then opens
the parcel.

GEORGE
Ange! It's here . . the job
pack.

ANGIE
(From other room)
Okay George . .

He pulls out some papers. ANGIE enters wearing marigolds
and sits on the arm of his chair. He can't wait to start
reading aloud.

GEORGE
We welcome you to the forefront
of a new government plan. You
and many alike around the country
have been selected to initiate
the youth of today in benefiting
in a more prosperous future for
themselves and generations after.

ANGIE
Cor . .

GEORGE
The schools of today are not just
restricted to the teaching of the
three R's, there is a new R on
our list, this R is for
responsibility. Responsibility
for the individual and
responsibility to the community
are the values that we want to
give you the responsibility of
educating.
 
You have not been assigned this
mission as yourself as you know
it but as one of the new heroes
of your community. Uniform comes
provided.

ANGIE
Goodness me, that's certainly a
lot of responsibilities.

GEORGE
Oh, I don't know Ange, I think
I'm to old for all this. What
have I got to offer the aspiring
youth of today?

ANGIE
Nonsense George . . you're the
perfect role model.

George doesn't look convinced. He looks into the package.



INT. BEDROOM - DAY

GEORGE is standing in front of a full length mirror holding
some papers. He looks for something in his reflection.

He steps to the side. George enthusiastically jumps in
front of the mirror and rehearses.

GEORGE
Hi Guys . .
(Big smile)
Right . . put up your hands, who
can tell me what liberty is?
(Points at the mirror)
You there.

Yes, well done, that's about
right. For example you have the
liberty of having an education,
and that's why all of you are
here today. And that's why I am
here today as well.

I better introduce myself . . I'm
. . Captain Freedom . .

I've been sent on special duties
to your school to tell you all
about your human rights . . now
you're all humans aren't you?
(Little chuckle)
Of course the most important
right we have is our right
life... other rights we have, and
some of these you might want to
remember to tell your teachers...
(Slightly more chuckle)
the right not be subjected to
torture, inhuman degradation, or
punishing treatment.
(Looks down at his
script)
No one should be held in slavery.
We should have the right to fair
trail, we all have the right to
freedom of movement . .



INT. LOUNGE - NIGHT

GEORGE paces confidently up and down the room rehearsing in
front of ANGIE without the aid of his notes. She is
ironing a shirt; behind her hangs a freshly pressed suit.

GEORGE
Of course with all this
independence there could be
anarchy on our streets . .
couldn't there? That's why we
have a controlled society.
 
There are exceptions to
criminal's rights in order that
we can stop our own freedoms from
being infringed upon. For
example, if people don't agree
with our freedoms, we don't have
to let them into our country,
this is very few people mind.

Now guys, although there are
people like me . . Captain
Freedom . . to protect your human
rights, soon enough it will your
generations turn to protect our
society. As you leave assembly
take one of the leaflets, it will
remind you of all your human
rights.

Well... thank you everyone for
letting me . . Captain Freedom...
have my freedom of speech . .
now . . just before I finish . .
does anyone have any questions?

Angie puts her hand up.

GEORGE (CONT'D)
Yes . . the girl in the middle
there . . the one with the iron.

ANGIE
Didn't Maggie Thatcher say there
was no such thing as society.
And you know before you were
talking about freedom fighters
and Nelson Mandela.

GEORGE
Oh here we go . .
Come on love . . that was before
they were even born.

ANGIE
Alright . !

She puts her hand in the air again.

GEORGE
Yes.

ANGIE
What does freedom of movement
actually mean? My teacher put me
in detention last night, and . .

GEORGE
Yes I'll put you in detention if
you're not careful . . I think
I'll leave out the bit with the
questions...

Angie hands George his shirt and suit.

ANGIE
I think it's brilliant darling,
really. Here comes Captain
Freedom to save the universe!

GEORGE
If Captain Freedom brings us one
step closer to a 5 star hotel and
a week in the sun then he'll
certainly be my hero.

ANGIE
Hah . . three stars would be just
fine!

GEORGE
Stranger things have happened
dear.



INT. BEDROOM - DAY

GEORGE and ANGIE are snug asleep in bed.

George wakes up. He looks at his digital radio alarm clock
- the time is not displayed; he gives it a couple of taps.
Anxiously George flicks his bedside lamp on and off; no
response. He grabs his watch.

Terror! He jumps out of bed.

GEORGE
(Panic)
Ange . . Ange . . wake up . .
Ange . .

ANGIE
(Half asleep)
What George?

George goes to his suit hanging on the side.

GEORGE
Late . . no time . . oooh, what
happened? Oooh . .

He bypasses the suit and opens his bag.

We move out of the bedroom.

ANGIE
What?

GEORGE
The alarm . . no electricity . .
no time . . late... arghhh . . !

ANGIE
Hurry George!



EXT. DRIVEWAY - DAY

ANGIE looks through the bedroom window.

GEORGE emerges through the front door; he is wearing a
lycra superhero suit covered in stars and stripes insignia
finished and a shiny golden cape.

He rushes to his car and slams the door; it doesn't close
properly. He slams it shut again, some of his cape hangs
through the door. He turns the key in the ignition; the
car doesn't start. He tries again; he tries again.

George bounces up and down in his seat with anxiety,
finally the motor turns over; he revs the engine. Smoke
pours from the exhaust as the car pulls into the road.



EXT. STREET - DAY

GEORGE drives down the street; he checks his speedometer
that doesn't wobble over thirty.

He looks up at some traffic lights that show green.

A SCHOOLBOY jumps across the road. George slams on the
brakes. SCREEEEEEEEEEEEECH . . the car comes to a stop.
George closes his eyes for a moment, he looks up.

The boy reaches the other side of the road and meets a
huddle of thuggish friends.

SCHOOLBOY 1
Oy . . old man! Forgot your
glasses!?

The other boys look over; they are smoking cigarettes.

SCHOOLBOY 2
Wanker!

George ignores them but he has stalled the car. He tries
to restart; the engine doesn't turnover. He tries again;
the starter motor squeals; the schoolboys laugh. He tries
again; nothing.

SCHOOLBOY 3
Get a new car Grandad!

George jumps out of the car and slams the door. It doesn't
shut; he tries again and locks the door. The boys are in
hysterics.

SCHOOLBOY 2
Look . . he thinks he's superman!

SCHOOLBOY 3
Why don't you fly there old boy!?

One of the boys starts singing the superman theme. George
hastily runs down the road, his golden cape flows behind
him as he dodges the pedestrians.

George looks over his shoulder and the boys have surrounded
his car rocking it from side to side.

He checks his watch. He runs into the distance.



EXT. SCHOOL - DAY

A few pupils are still floating into school.

Down the road rushes George, through the gates and across
the playground.



INT. SCHOOL CORRIDOR

GEORGE rushes along the corridor past bemused and amused
students.



INT. SCHOOL HALL - DAY

GEORGE bursts through the doors. As he slows to a halt his
face drops. The school hall is filled with rows of empty
chairs; paper handouts are scattered on the chairs and
screwed up on the floor.

He sits on a chair and catches his breath. George picks up
one of the handouts left on the adjacent seat. It is
folded into a paper aeroplane; he throws it discontentedly
and it floats to the floor. We see one of the handouts, it
reads:

'CAPTAIN FREEDOM, Your human rights...etc'

He puts his head in his hands.



INT. OFFICE - DAY

TRACEY
Next please!

MRS. BARTROP
Oh yes. Hope not to see you next
time then!

MRS. BARTROP gets up and toddles through the door. TRACEY
holds down the button on the speaker phone, [BEAT] she
takes her finger off.

TRACEY
NEXT PLEASE!

GEORGE enters and sits himself down.

GEORGE
Hello there.

Tracey looks deep into her computer screen.

TRACEY
Yes . . Mr. Halliburton . .

GEORGE
Hello.

TRACEY
Now this is the third time I've
seen you Mr. Halliburton . .
you've been unemployed now for
almost three months.

GEORGE
Yes.

TRACEY
Ah . . I see you got a position
this month . . but your
employment was terminated after
the first day.

GEORGE
Ah yes . . had everything
prepared . . but when it came to
the day . . you see . . the
electricity ran out . . we've
been meaning to update the meter
. . money's short these days . .
anyway . . my alarm didn't go off
. . I would have made it if it
wasn't for the car . . we had to
empty our holiday fund to get it
fixed . .

TRACEY
Yes, well thank you Mr.
Halliburton but unfortunately
there isn't room for that sort of
information on our database . .
just so you know it is possible
that this could mean it might be
harder to find a position for you
in the future . .

GEORGE
Oh . . I see.

TRACEY
I'm just going to search our
system for you Mr. Halliburton.

GEORGE
Thank you.

Tracey clicks the mouse, George looks disconsolate.

TRACEY
Mr. Halliburton.

GEORGE
Yes.

TRACEY
Your database tells us you have
some experience in the field of
aviation . .

GEORGE
Well . . yes . . yes I do . .

TRACEY
Oh good . . this could be right
up your street.

GEORGE
It's not exactly . .

TRACEY
Now just send a C.V. to the
address on this form and I'm sure
you'll be invited to an
interview.

She hands over a sheet.

GEORGE
Oh . .

TRACEY
Next please!

GEORGE
But . ?

TRACEY
Thank you Mr. Halliburton.

She issues George a smile.

GEORGE
Yes . . thank you very much.

George exits.



INT. AIRPORT TERMINAL - DAY

We follow a couple in there fifties pushing a trolley
loaded with suitcases.

They walk past a glass wall through which we see the
aeroplanes taxi, holiday makers boarding, etc.



INT. AEROPLANE - DAY

GEORGE is sitting in a passenger seat fastening his seat
belt, his arms cling to the rests.

WHOOOOOOOOOSH . . the aeroplane engines fire up. George
closes his eyes.

[BEAT]

The engines stop.

HOSTESS
Welcome aboard captain.

George opens his eyes, looks slightly confused at the
hostess.

HOSTESS (CONT'D)
Engine tests passed captain.
Twenty minutes to turnaround.

The aircraft captain walks down the aisle from behind
George.

CAPTAIN
Thank you.

The captain walks through.

HOSTESS
(Addressing George
politely)
Twenty minutes to turnaround.

George acknowledges and stands up smiling. He is wearing a
smart cleaners uniform and carries a litter bag. He picks
up some rubbish.

He gets to the seat next to the window and looks out; with
glee he watches an aeroplane take off.

END.


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